Financial imbalances could lead to implosion

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Swindon fan Nick Judd looks after the pennies while others splash the cash

I’m no David Conn, but football seems to be on the verge of economic implosion.

This week Manchester United revealed the only thing keeping them in profit for the last financial year was the £80 million sale of Cristiano Ronaldo to Real Madrid.

Who knows what would happen should they finish outside the top four, or be knocked out of the Champions League this season.

Neither are beyond the realms of possibility.

And then there’s Portsmouth, who continue to lurch from one financial catastrophe to another.

NEWS, Tue Jan 12: A Premier club could collapse this year - David Sullivan

It’s also happening in the lower leagues.

Last week Norwich City revealed a debt of £23 million and losses of £5 million, yet they’ve still managed to buy three players this week, including Anthony McNamee from us.

Their accounts show they spunked £2.5 million on loan deals alone last season!

McNamee: "What do you mean, 'spunked'?!"

I hope for their sake they get promoted, otherwise they could find themselves in all kinds of trouble.

Such frivolous spending is what doomed Leeds – and they started a lot higher up the pyramid than Norwich currently are.

I wonder what clubs like Luton and Southampton make of these ongoing financial crises.

If Pompey were in the Football League they would have been deducted points weeks ago.

Nothing against them personally, but why is there one rule for them and another for the rest of us?

It’s all the more galling to see things like this going on when there are clubs – Swindon included – who are making a real go at working within their means for the first time in, well, ages.

But what incentive is there to do so when so many other teams get away with being careless?

Swindon are successfully cutting their budget by not paying agents' fees, while the board is rewarding players for actual match time, goals scored and games won as opposed to just turning up and clocking on.

Is it any coincidence to find us nearer the top of the table than the bottom as a result?

The board have also trimmed the squad and are making more effort to bring through the next Ben Tozer, Lukas Jutkiewicz or Nile Ranger by investing in our youth squad.

Tozer, Jutkiewicz & Ranger: The future's stripey

And even after all this, the club is still struggling to operate on an even keel.

So what right do Norwich have to keep buying players despite being in the red?

The strongest clubs should be able to buy the best players. That’s the way of the world, but what if those clubs don’t have the money?

Will it take the collapse of one club, whether it’s Manchester United or Norwich City, to make someone in the Premier League/Football League/UEFA/FIFA do something about it?

For the sake of their fans, I hope not...

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